, Salem, MA


March 18, 2014

Beverly hockey state championship notebook:

Frates inspired Panthers



All told this postseason, Beverly spent 86:39 leading their opponents. The Panthers were tied for 100:33 and behind for only 5:28 seconds of play.


In fact, this postseason the Panthers have held the lead for 74:40 and been tied for 68:42 in addition to their 5:28 of time behind. Interestingly, out of that 68:42 of time tied, 56:31 came in the first-round game against Danvers.


This brings the total number of state championship sports from Beverly High to seven. The hockey squad joins golf, gymnastics, boys lacrosse, swimming, football and girls track as those who reached the pinnacle of their sport in a particular season.


Emerging victorious in his final high school game was both satisfying and bittersweet for Straw.
"Winning the title was the best possible way we could end our season. We were dominant all year and deserved it," said Straw, who was recently accepted into the University of Vermont. "I'm saddened that hockey is over for me, but ending it with a ring on my finger really eases the pain.
"Winning this title proves everyone wrong who doubted us and said we wouldn't," he added. "My absolute favorite memory forever will be winning this state title with the kids I grew up with since Mites and the coaches I grew up watching play."


One of the favorite memories we’ll take away from Championship Sunday: taking place about 45 minutes before the game began: Gilligan wandered the hallway outside his team’s locker room on the third floor at the TD Garden, taking his time to soak in the murals of Boston Bruins greats of yesteryear painted on the walls. He was completely at peace and enjoying the moment to himself, confident that his team was as ready as it could be for the biggest game of his life.

And as is usually the case when it comes to hockey matters, Gilligan was right.




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